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Stuart Clark's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Stuart Clark recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Stuart Clark's favorite book recommendations of all time.


The Northern Lights

Science, biography, and arctic exploration coverage in this extraordinary true story of the life and work of Norwegian scientist Kristian Birkeland, the troubled genius who solved the mysteries of one of nature’s most spectacular displays.  
   Captivated by the otherworldly lights of the aurora borealis, Birkeland embarked on a lifelong quest to discover their cause.  His pursuit took him to some of the most forbidding landscapes on earth, from the remote snowcapped mountains of Norway to the war-torn deserts of Africa.  In the face of rebuke by the scientific establishment, sabotage by...
Recommended by Stuart Clark, and 1 others.

Stuart ClarkThe earth is not isolated in space. One of the most obvious ways that our connection with the universe manifests itself is through the Northern Lights. (Source)

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This text examines scientific knowledge of the cosmic background radiation, the afterglow of the Big Bang in which the universe was born 15 billion years ago. It relates the search for the origins of the universe, beginning in the 1920s and culminating with the flight of the COBE satellite. less
Recommended by Stuart Clark, and 1 others.

Stuart ClarkAnother story of discovery. The microwave background to radiation was predicted by theory and is the greatest scientific discovery of the 20th century. (Source)

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Inspired by a long fascination with Galileo, and by the remarkable surviving letters of Galileo's daughter, a cloistered nun, Dava Sobel has written a biography unlike any other of the man Albert Einstein called "the father of modern physics- indeed of modern science altogether." Galileo's Daughter also presents a stunning portrait of a person hitherto lost to history, described by her father as "a woman of exquisite mind, singular goodness, and most tenderly attached to me."

The son of a musician, Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) tried at first to enter a monastery before...
Recommended by Stuart Clark, and 1 others.

Stuart ClarkDava ostensibly wrote a book about Galileo’s relationship with his daughter but actually it reveals a lot about Galileo and science along the way. (Source)

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In this deeply original book, science writer Anil Ananthaswamy sets out in search of the telescopes and detectors that promise to answer the biggest questions in modern cosmology. Why is the universe expanding at an ever faster rate? What is the nature of the "dark matter" that makes up almost a quarter of the universe? Why does the universe appear fine-tuned for life? Are there others besides our own? Ananthaswamy soon finds himself at the ends of the earth--in remote and sometimes dangerous places. Take the Atacama Desert in the Chilean Andes, one of the coldest, driest places on the... more
Recommended by Stuart Clark, and 1 others.

Stuart ClarkAnil Ananthaswamy is like a pilgrim on a journey, travelling to these great scientific establishments and trying to understand the universe. (Source)

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In southern California, nearly a half century ago, a small band of researchers -- equipped with a new 200-inch telescope and a faith born of scientific optimism -- embarked on the greatest intellectual adventure in the history of humankind: the search for the origin and fate of the universe. Their quest would eventually engulf all of physics and astronomy, leading not only to the discovery of quasars, black holes, and shadow matter but also to fame, controversy, and Nobel Prizes. Lonely Hearts of the Cosmos tells the story of the men and women who have taken eternity on their shoulders and... more

Deborah BlumDennis Overbye does a wonderful job of showing just how incredibly driven a lot of these scientists were to achieve scientific goals. (Source)

Stuart ClarkThis is a massively ambitious book, describing the way cosmology progressed in the 20th century through the stories of the people who made the advances. (Source)

Andrew LawrenceIf you want to know how astronomy really works then this is a book you should read. It is warts and all, about the competing personalities. (Source)

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